Paris Trance

Paris Trance by Geoff Dyer

I had read Geoff Dyer’s Yoga For People Who Can’t Be Bothered To Do It a few years back, and I remember being entertained by his style of writing and how he bounced from place to place, experience to experience, often without any sort of goal but still able to muster up some sort of greater truth. Paris Trance was more or less the same, but was also just kind of really sad. Which I liked. Not sad as much as melancholy. It centers on two couples – Luke & Nicole, Alex & Sahra – and together they spend a portion of their lives adventuring throughout France. We see the blossoming of each romance – passionate, heated, and earnest – as well as pure and loyal friendship between the four friends. We then, however, see the deterioration of such bonds, leading the reader to remember that this novel isn’t some wondrous fantasy, it’s life. And that’s just kind of what happens. Most things don’t last.  

All memories are premonitions, all premonitions memories.

Nothing in the past has any value. You cannot store up happiness. The past is useless. You can dwell on it but not in it. What good does it do anyone, knowing that they once sat with friends in a car and called out the names of cinemas and films, that they ate lunch in a town whose name they have forgotten?